Let’s all calm down. Tom Brady hasn’t won a Super Bowl in like six months. He’s not that good.
The seas are largely calm in the golf world, but Phil Mickelson continues to chum the waters. On Wednesday, after the PGA Tour said it would adopt the governing bodies’ new Model Local Rule limiting the length of clubs, Mickelson took to Twitter. “It is extremely disappointing to find out that the PGA Tour adopted the new USGA rule through the media,” he tweeted. “I don’t know of any player who had any say or any kind of representation in this matter. I do know many are wondering if there’s a better way.”
This isn’t surprising. Phil has spoken out on this topic before, has never seen eye to eye with the USGA, and is among the 3% of professional golfers who use drivers longer than 46 inches. But it’s still a tough look for him. For one thing, he was wrong that PGA Tour members weren’t consulted on the rule. A few hours after Mickelson posted his tweets, Rory McIlroy, chairman of the Tour’s Player Advisory Council, set the record straight: “I was in all those meetings when we discussed it for quite a while, and I think the majority of players are on board with it.”
There’s no denying Phil Mickelson’s stature in the game. Whenever he wants, he can flip a switch and become a leader in the conversation about the future of golf. Even if his stance is that everyone should “hit bombs” and unleash “hellacious seeds,” he’d still be capable of providing useful insights based on his decades of experience. But his commentary on the Model Local Rule has been so overheated that we can only assume he’s more interested in riling up a Twitter mob. And who knows, maybe he’s laying the groundwork for a lucrative jump to a new circuit that makes its own rules.
The debate over distance in golf isn’t going anywhere. Whether Phil contributes to it meaningfully is up to him.
PGA Tour – Robert Streb started with five birdies and an eagle through six holes before cooling off to post a 61. CJ Cup Leaderboard
European Tour – An extremely firm Valderrama bested much of the field on Thursday, allowing fewer than a dozen players to shoot 70 or better. Andalucía Masters Leaderboard
Korn Ferry Tour Q-School – The action at one of two Second Stage sites finishes on Friday, and Jonathan Byrd, Derek Lamely, Hayden Springer, Jamie Lovemark, Tee-k Kelly, and Willie Mack III are in position to get through to Final Stage. Second Stage Brooksville Leaderboard
Renton Laidlaw, longtime European Tour writer and broadcaster, died this week at the age of 82. Laidlaw retired in 2014 after covering professional golf for nearly 60 years. Alistair Tait has a blog post celebrating the great man’s “magical life.”
Thomas Pagel, the USGA’s Senior Managing Director of Governance, appeared on Golf Today to explain the new Model Local Rule and address some common criticisms.
The No. 1 player in the PGA Tour University rankings at the end of the 2021 fall college golf season will receive a sponsor exemption into the European Tour’s Dubai Desert Classic in January.
The Latest from The Fried Egg
New Prairie Dunes Country Club and George Wright Golf Course photos have been added to the photography section of our pro shop.
The Fried Egg Podcast – In the latest edition of our Superintendent Series, Andy Johnson talks with Boston Golf Club’s Rodney Hine. Brought to you by the Toro Company. Listen on iTunes, Stitcher, and Spotify.
The Shotgun Start – After discussing Phil’s tweets, Andy and Brendan call up John Huggan to talk about his late friend Renton Laidlaw and the future of the European Tour. Listen on iTunes, Stitcher, and Spotify.
Raynorman is back! This time he’s on a classic tour towel from Winston Collection. Get yours today!